This will be undoubtedly the easiest blog post I’ve ever
written. It’s on a topic so vast I could go on all day. I won’t, but I will
give you a brief insight into my Galway Rose 2015 experience.
There is a lot more to it than just that one night on the
stage. Galway Rose is a regional final for a large festival held annually in
Co.Kerry called the Rose of Tralee International Festival. People come from all
over the world to take part in this televised event that is in it's 56th year. The process goes a little something like this.
I decided to take part on the recommendation of 2 friends of
mine who were involved in 2014. I attended last year and at the interval I ran
up to Maria and told her how fantastic she was and how I believed she should
win. She said “No, Nicola is going to win. She is so lovely and would make a
perfect rose.” I was a bit surprised, I mean this is a competition, why didn’t she
want to win? I guessed she must have been lying as I didn’t understand her
perspective. Nicola did go on to win Galway Rose 2014 and made it to Tralee.
Maria was right, she was a fantastic rose and an amazing person. It wasn’t until
I took part that I understood. It isn’t like a competition in the traditional
sense. As we lined up alongside our escorts at 7.30pm and the excitement was at
its peak there was a real team feeling. Everyone wanted to do well but wanted
all the other roses to do well too. We supported each other like no one else
The highlight of the Galway Rose tour had to
have been our visit to Pieta house in Tuam. Pieta House provides a free, therapeutic approach to people who are in suicidal distress and those who engage in self-harm. You can visit their website by clicking here. The
building itself feels like a home and that’s mainly down to the staff who make
you feel like family. The reason I decided to do get involved in the Galway
Rose is because I wanted to do something that challenged me. Going to Pieta
house I realised that everyday just getting up out of bed can be a challenge
for some people. I can’t speak highly enough of the work they do and of all
those individuals who work so hard at fundraising. If you want to get involved
visit Darkness into Light
Chivalry isn’t dead. The escorts are all
absolute gents. Special thanks to my escort Peter “2Litre” Killalea. His
comments of the night included:
- Just about to walk into the function room – “if
you have to hold your dress up let me carry your bag”.
- Just about to walk on stage – “Are ya nervous
now? Ara you’ll be grand.”
- After party – “Ah Maria you spilled a drink on
your dress! Hold on let me get a hairdryer!”
Another special mention to
Seamie. Although he is a committee member he was like an escort for all the
It’s not about the winning it’s the taking part.
Cheesy I know but it’s true. There can only be one and Olga Lee is the perfect
rose to represent us all. She has characteristics of all of us and is such a
lady, I know she will do everyone proud in Portlaoise and surely Tralee.
Galway is full if talented, beautiful, caring,
funny, entertaining, thoughtful and inspirational people.
5. These roses and myself are included in the above bracket and that's only a fraction, we are proud to be Galwegians!
For anyone who’s ever thought about entering I urge you to
do it. In years to come you won’t be uttering the words “I wish I never did
that”, you’ll be saying “I’m so glad I took part.”
I’d like to thank everyone who was involved and who helped me
and the other roses along the way.
Denis, Ann-marie and Seamie from the Galway Rose
Committee, ye are such troopers and do amazing work. Also, the 3 judges for the
tough task of selecting the 2015 Rose.
To my employers Lifes2good for sponsoring me
and, well ya know, giving me a job.
To all my international “Selfie” supporters, ye
were just epic.
To Lisa’s Hair Emporium, Michelle Guthrie and
Lisa Fahy for my hair and make-up on Saturday (I think there should have been
an additional award “And the nominees for “Most Work Needed On One Person’s Face
and Hair” goes to…..!)
To my poor boyfriend who listened to me talk
about this non-sop for the past 3 weeks! He also supported me every step of the
way and made me feel like I’d won before I even started. (Que vomit)
To my family and friends who beamed with pride
when I was on stage, I really felt like a local celebrity for a night, I felt
To the 23 other amazing Roses, ye are legends.
You should be so proud of yourselves you’ve achieved something great and I hope
that you know that.
Thanks for reading. The MOD, XX
Rose Of Tralee
Galway Rose Facebook page
The Clayton Hotel
Eyre Square Centre
Ard Ri House Hotel
Athenry Heritage Centre
Galway Greyhound Track
Lisa's Hair Emporium
Lisa Fahy Makeup Artistry